Ever dreamed of living in your own storied castle, complete with a moat and turrets? While European castles get all the fairy-tale attention, you don’t have to hop on a plane for a royally good getaway. We’ve found seven awe-inspiring castles right here in the US. They may not have been occupied by kings and queens, but you’ll feel like royalty thanks to their majestic settings and luxurious interiors.


1. Magical moments in New Hampshire

If your kids love The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and daydream about secret cupboards and hidden rooms, this New Hampshire castle is for you. The sprawling estate was built in Gothic style with a big dose of whimsy. There are secret rooms and hidden staircases to explore, not to mention the requisite bridge over a stream. The grounds are equally magical. The home sits on 500 acres, complete with a lake and multiple swing sets perfect for burning off energy and fueling fantasies about royal adventures.

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2. Soak up the sun in Ft. Lauderdale

Cinderella’s castle isn’t the only royal residence in Florida. This magnificent riverfront home boasts all the luxuries you’d expect of a castle—with a modern flair. Traditional elements like fountains and chandeliers are offset by a clean, crisp interior. The inside of the home is light and bright, thanks to an atrium design with a crisscrossed network of balconies and walkways. The outside is more beach house than Buckingham Palace, with a sleek pool and barbecue area. 

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3. Make believe in a cozy New York castle

Guests staying at this Tudor-style home arrive in royal style, crossing a stream and climbing stone steps to enter through the mini-castle’s arched door. Although the home is petite with just three bedrooms, it’s big on charm and fun. Oil paintings and dark wood details give it a stately look, but the home is also family friendly. Kids will love exploring the turret, which is stocked with costumes and masks—perfect for an afternoon of dress-up. Parents will appreciate that the Finger Lakes wine area is just a short drive away.

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4. Royal family fun in Illinois

Think of it as summer camp with a regal twist … This spectacular castle in Illinois is set on 40 acres of gorgeous grounds and boasts its own lake. Hop on the pontoon boat to explore the waters or go for a walk in the secluded forest. When the sun sets, the private observatory will have you seeing stars. While the house has plenty of rooms for everyone, you may have to flip a coin to decide who gets the King Midas room or the Princess room, complete with a canopied bed and fireplace.

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5. Vive les vacances—in Virginia

If vacationing in a castle nestled on the shores of a European lake ranks on your bucket list, we’ve found an equally opulent option closer to home. This French chateau-style property is located on nearly six acres along Virginia’s Smith Mountain Lake. Just about every room has a lake view, but you’ll want to grab a kayak or the pedal boat to explore the natural surroundings close up. The house is meant to accommodate a crowd or extended family in style: It boasts a game room, library, and placid outdoor pool.

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